There’s no shortage of opinions as to the connection between a company’s social media presence and its financial performance.
More than a few authors have written about the ways in which a corporate Facebook page, or a sales associate’s LinkedIn profile, can lead to ROI. Others have developed complex formulas to help companies determine the monetary value of a “Like” on Facebook or a “Follow” on Twitter.
Complicating things further, however, are the number of skeptics who see few links between a company’s social media profile and its balance sheets, pointing out that “Likes” on Facebook don’t necessarily translate to customer engagement or the sale of a product.
Clara Shih, CEO of Silicon Valley start-up Hearsay Social, says the real value of social media lies somewhere in the middle. A presence on “social,” as Shih calls it, can result in ROI— but you have to know how to make it personal, and how to use it to your advantage.